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're going to face it again, you know, debt ceiling stuff, what is the republican strategy in dealing with the democrats? david. >> you know, mike, i was on capitol hill this week talking to top republicans, and i'm getting a sense and you're seeing it written about as well, that they would maybe like to step away from the brink about the debt ceiling. they do want to force the issue about how can they get this president to agree to additional spending cuts? the debt ceiling is a dangerous game. i think they recognize that politically. they'll push -- the question is how -- how do they push on the debt ceiling? do they say, look, we'll give you a short-term extension of the debt ceiling for a certain amount of spending cuts, or we'll give you a long-term extension like you want for even more spending cuts. can they force entitlement reform around medicare, for instance, even some of the -- in their view -- more limited things that the president wants to do around means testing and age and indexing to try to attach that to a debt-limit deal. do they move beyond the debt limit, try to g
that this deal now would have to include an extension of the debt ceiling that they just got to avoid the fiscal cliff. well, he ultimately folded on that. so as a tactical matter, even in their minority position, they can look at this and see, well, there is some gain to be gotten here if we keep pushing on this. i think the flip side of this is also a big challenge for the president. if he really wants to unshackle the economy, if he wants to get more robust economic growth, does he not want to be more proactive about dealing with some of these entitlements, with dealing with the budget picture, even where he has real problems with his supposed, you know, partners in this to republicans? does he not want to take advantage of the power he has to try to advance this, to get more robust economic growth independent of his misgivings about his partners here on capitol hill. >> chuck, i think it's fair to say that harry reid was somewhat marginalized during negotiation biden sort of swooped in to save the day. what do you see as his role going forward as we edge toward these upcoming fiscal cliffs?
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